Don’t run the risk of your company being struck off due to late filing of accounts.

7th August 2017

Despite changes to the process almost two years ago, many businesses still don’t understand how quickly their company could be struck off if their accounts are filed late, with some businesses unwittingly finding their companies being deregistered. In this article, we highlight the key timings and ways to ensure your company is not caught out.

What has changed?

A company must file accounts with Companies House 9 months after the year end date. If accounts are filed late, The Companies Registrar will send at least two formal warning letters to a company. Then, if no objection or response is received, a formal notice of the intention to strike off the company will be printed in the Gazette. Two months after the publication of this notice, the company will officially be deregistered.

This notice period reduced from four months on 10th October 2015 as part of the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015.

The shorter notice period gives HMRC less time to raise an objection, in order to recover any outstanding tax before the company is struck off, reducing the opportunity for this ‘last chance’ warning to companies who didn’t actually want to deregister,

In addition, the time period over which the initial warning letters are issued has reduced from one month to fourteen days, meaning that companies have much less time to act over the entire process – from late filing to actual deregistration.

Stage of Striking Off Previous Notice Period Notice Period Now
Minimum of 2 formal warning letters from Companies Registrar following late filing of accounts One month 14 days
Notice of intention to strike off published in Gazette by Companies House Four months Two Months
Total time from late filing to striking off of Company Five months 2.5 months

How to proceed

Don’t let this happen to your company by making sure your accounts are submitted on time in the first place. If you’re struggling with your company accounts, or think there may be an issue with their submission being on time, we’re here to help, so please don’t hesitate to contact one of our Accounts & Auditing team.

Chartered Accountants in Sunderland, offering expertise on everything from Tax and Business Planning,
to Accounts and VAT.